Tokuren - Madake Koto Shinai
The Tokuren possesses an almost perfectly straight profile from kensen to tsuka, flaring only slightly at the base. This supreme koto shinai has an even balance all the way down its length. It cuts through the air incredibly quickly making it perfect for large and final strikes. It is especially good at closing down the center line and striking Men. It is constructed four incredibly even and dense staves that when assembled form a cross when viewed from the tip. This construction gives the tokuren its compact and slim design.
Japanese Madake bamboo is widely considered the finest material for making shinai. slow growth results in a dense grain that is very durable as well as providing excellent feedback from strikes. This especially noticeable on a koto shinai, like the Tokuren - strikes resound definitively, encouraging crisp and positive kendo.
I have tried several of the 25mm version of this shinai.
The profile is surprisingly thin, but upon checking the bamboo the quality was really good, better than other madake shinai I have tried and this has been consistent across repeat purchases.
The balance is quite even so feels heavy and solid/ The only thing is it is very slim at 25mm and that can promote over-gripping, having tried the 26mm that is slightly better, shame it doesn't come in a 28mm.
Overall I really like this shinai.